Artist Pawel Althamer Is in the Skin Trade

Pawel Althamer's (2001). Photo: Courtesy of Lithops Collection

Pawel Althamer's sculpture of a little girl is made of animal skin, stitched together with hemp, and sprouting some pretty tough straw-like hair. She is truly a beast: innocent and yet deeply creepy. In her hand she holds a fishing rod on which a single feather dangles, swirling beneath the air conditioner of The New Museum of Contemporary Art, where she is on view through September 21. In the museum's tonic new show, "After Nature," she joins Maurizio Cattelan's headless horse protruding from a wall, and a recreation of the Montana cabin where Ted Kaczynski shacked up making mail bombs, all inspired by Werner Herzog. It may have you running for the nearest mega-mall. -Emma Pearse